6 Homemade Toners For All Skin Types

Toners are an essential part of the skincare routine. They are used to remove any leftover makeup or dirt after cleansing and are also very important to balance the skin’s pH and prepare it for moisturizing (and serums if you choose). You can make your toner by using fresh ingredients that will be good for your skin. You can also find commercial toners that work well.

Best Toners for Different Skin Types

Different skin types need different toners to get the most out of them.

Dry Skin

You’ll want a hydrating, moisturizing toner to help your skin maintain hydration and plump up those fine lines. Look for ingredients like hyaluronic acid (our favorite), glycerin, or shea butter, as they are all moisturizing.

Good Plant-Based Toners for Dry Skin

  • Rosewater Toner – Rose, glycerin, aloe vera water
  • Aloe Vera Water with Witch Hazel – Aloe vera extract, witch hazel extract
  • Lavender Chamomile Hydrosol with Balancing Herbs – Lavender hydrosol, chamomile hydrosol, witch hazel extract
  • Rose Geranium Hydrating Toner – Rose geranium hydrosol, lavender hydrosol

Sensitive Skin

You’ll want a gentle toner that won’t irritate your skin. Look for calming ingredients like aloe vera or arnica to soothe and hydrate.

Good Plant-Based Toners for Sensitive Skin

  • Aloe Vera Water with Witch Hazel – Aloe vera, witch hazel extract
  • Rosewater Toner – Rosewater, glycerin, aloe vera water
  • Cucumber Hydrating Mist – Cucumber hydrosol, aloe vera extract
  • Gentle Chamomile Toner – Lavender hydrosol, chamomile hydrosol

Oily Skin

An astringent toner is best for oily skin. Look for ingredients like witch hazel or apple cider vinegar to help shrink your pores and tighten your skin.

Good Plant-Based Toners for Oily Skin

  • Green Tea Toner – Green tea extract, witch hazel extract, aloe vera water
  • Apple Cider Vinegar with Rose Water – Apple cider vinegar, rose water
  • Rose Geranium Hydrating Toner – Rose geranium hydrosol, lavender hydrosol

Combination Skin

You’ll want a toner that can balance both your dry and oily areas. Look for ingredients like aloe vera or witch hazel to keep everything in check.

Good Plant-Based Toners for Combination Skin

  • Rosewater Toner – Rosewater, glycerin, aloe vera water
  • Lavender Chamomile Hydrosol with Balancing Herbs – Lavender hydrosol, chamomile hydrosol, witch hazel extract
  • Cucumber Hydrating Mist – Cucumber hydrosol, aloe vera extract.

How to Use Toner

You can use a toner in different ways, depending on your needs.

  1. How to Use Toner as a Cleanser: You can wipe your face with cotton pads soaked in toner or use a sheet mask for quick cleansing. This way, you won’t have to use a separate cleanser each time you cleanse.
  2. How to Use Toner as an Extra Step in your Routine: This works well for sensitive skin types or if you have oily areas and dry patches (like most of us do!) You can apply it after cleansing but before moisturizing. Then finish up with serums or oils.

DIY Organic Toner Recipes

1. Rosewater Toner

This is a great all-around toner with rose water, glycerin (a skin-identical ingredient that helps hydration), and aloe vera. You can add witch hazel if you need an astringent for oily areas or chamomile to calm sensitive patches.

Ingredients:

  • Rosewater (30 ml or 1 oz) (store-bought or DIY with roses)
  • Glycerin (8-10 drops Aloe vera gel (8-10 drops) (options: witch hazel extract, chamomile hydrosol for sensitive skin types)

Expert Tip: For DIY rosewater, you can use a homemade infusion of roses. Bundle up about 30 buds in cheesecloth and pour boiling water over it to make an infused “tea.” You’ll want to leave this overnight before using the liquid in your recipe.

Directions

  1. Pour the rosewater into a clean bottle. Add glycerin and aloe vera gel.
  2. Shake well to mix them together.
  3. You can then add witch hazel extract or chamomile hydrosol if you need it.

2. Aloe Vera Water with Witch Hazel

This toner is great for dry skin types which need extra hydration. The aloe vera water helps with that, while the witch hazel extract has astringent properties to tighten up your pores after cleansing, which is perfect for oily areas or acne-prone skin.

Ingredients: 

  • Aloe Vera Water (30 ml or about an ounce) 
  • Witch Hazel Extract (15 drops)

Expert Tip: For DIY aloe vera water, you can use the gel from an aloe plant. Aloes are easy-to-care-for houseplants with flesh leaves filled with a gooey substance that’s great for your skin. To make homemade toner, slice off one of the fat bottom parts of an aloe leaf and squeeze out the gel. Combine that with water in a blender to make it into a liquid, then strain through cheesecloth or any other thin fabric to remove pulp.

Directions:

  1. First, pour the aloe vera water into a clean bottle, followed by witch hazel extract.
  2. Shake well before use to mix the two together.

3. Cucumber Hydrating Mist

This one is also great for dry skin types. It is cooling and refreshing enough to use as an all-over face refresher throughout the day or after workouts on hot days. The cucumber water helps with that, while aloe vera gel soothes and nourishes your skin.

Ingredients:

  • Cucumber Hydrosol (30 ml or about an ounce)
  • Aloe Vera Gel (15 drops)

Expert Tip: You can also add a few spritzes of rosewater for extra hydration if you like!

Directions:

  1. Pour the cucumber hydrosol into your clean bottle, followed by aloe vera gel.
  2. Shake well to mix them together before use.
  3. Store in a cool dark place (like on top of your refrigerator).

4. Fennel ACV Toner

This toner is great for oily and acne-prone skin types. Fennel helps balance oil production, thanks to its diuretic properties, while apple cider vinegar balances the pH levels of your skin after cleansing, which can reduce breakouts.

Ingredients:

  • Fennel Essential Oil (15 drops)
  • Apple Cider Vinegar (15 drops)
  • Water or Hydrosol of choice, as needed, to bring the total liquid volume up to 30 ml. or about an ounce.

Expert Tip: Fennel essential oil can be a little intense for some users with sensitive skin types and may cause irritation with its strong scent. If that’s the case, add another essential oil that is soothing and balancing, like lavender or geranium.

Directions:

  1. Combine the fennel essential oil with apple cider vinegar first (you can use water as well if you like).
  2. Mix them thoroughly before adding to your bottle of choice, along with any other hydrosols or water, to bring the total liquid volume up to 30 ml.
  3. Shake well before use and store in a cool dark place.

5. Citrus Toner

This toner is great for oily skin types that have clogged pores and/or blackheads and combination skin with dry areas. The lemon essential oil has astringent properties to tighten up your pores after cleansing, while grapefruit hydrosol helps balance the pH levels of your skin and reduces future breakouts.

Ingredients:

  • Grapefruit Hydrosol (30 ml or about an ounce)
  • Lemon Essential Oil (15 drops)

Expert Tip: You can add a few more drops of lemon essential oil if its scent is too faint for you. Lemons are also great as a dietary supplement to help detox your liver and support healthy cellular function.

Directions:

  1. Combine the grapefruit hydrosol with lemon essential oil first (you can use water as well if you like).
  2. Mix them thoroughly before adding to your bottle of choice, along with any other hydrosols or water as needed to bring the total liquid volume up to 30 ml.
  3. Shake well before use and store in a cool dark place.

6. Coconut Rose Toner

This toner is great for dry skin types and sensitive or irritated skin that needs a break after cleansing or exposure to irritating environmental factors like pollutants, smoke, etc. The rose hydrosol helps balance your skin’s pH levels, while coconut oil soothes inflammation and nourishes your skin.

Ingredients:

  • Rose Hydrosol (30 ml or about an ounce)
  • Coconut Oil (15 drops)

Expert Tip: You can also add a few spritzes of rosewater for extra hydration if you like! If the coconut oil is too thick for your liking, you can always add some raw honey.

Directions:

  1. Pour the rose hydrosol into a clean bottle first (you can use water as well if you like).
  2. Mix them thoroughly before adding to your bottle of choice, along with any other hydrosols or water as needed to bring the total liquid volume up to 30 ml.
  3. Gently warm the coconut oil between your fingers before adding it, and add any other essential oils, if desired, for a stronger scent.
  4. Shake well before use and store in a cool dark place.

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